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1059382 Posts in 43071 Topics- by 35025 Members - Latest Member: oemr

October 31, 2014, 01:19:07 PM
TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsDomination: Remnants of the Past
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Author Topic: Domination: Remnants of the Past  (Read 2954 times)
batiali
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« on: October 07, 2012, 12:29:06 PM »



Domination is a strategy & simulation game in which many stories (of Lords and Ladies) are told by an elder historian. You will take the role of one of these rulers at the age of 20 and play the game until you die. Every ruler has a different story, different goals, different characteristics. The game is about making the right choices by observing the conditions. Whether you are a mystic woman fighting for revenge, a barbarian warrior ravaging for glory, a scientist to discover meaning of life or an honorable knight to bring peace to lands, your time will end one day. And as Gandalf said once, "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."

This project had started months ago, and I used to keep a devlog on here. I haven't updated that topic for more than 4 months, so I wanted to make a fresh start since a lot changed by then. So, click here for the old topic, in case you want to have a look.

Domination is a strategy game, but on a macro level. The game is played on a map and the interaction is very limited. What you can do is:
  • Make the decisions on important events. (Events occur semi-randomly.)
  • Distribute your people on 4 different duties. (Farmer, Merchant, Scientist, Militia)
  • Decide what to research next when a technology is discovered.
  • Political interactions. (Trade / Threat / Gift / Spy)
  • Choose locations of where to build your next cities.


The game itself is built on flash/air using Away3D engine for 3d. It'll hopefully be released for PC / Mac & mobile tablets.

I will try to keep this topic more updated than the last one. Smiley


« Last Edit: October 07, 2012, 12:34:48 PM by batiali » Logged
Paul Jeffries
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« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2012, 02:10:46 PM »

Sounds interesting.  So once your character dies do you pick up a new character in the same world, affected by the consequences of the previous character's actions?
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batiali
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« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2012, 12:07:05 AM »

@Paul: That's not the case here, although it sounds like a good idea to take in consideration.

There will be story and free-play modes. In the story mode, you will unlock new characters by successfully reaching their objectives. As an example, you will play as Lady Zilea in the "Revenge" story where your objective is to put an end to one specific Lord. World will be created procedurally every time you start that mission with some pre-conditions.

By unlocking these rulers in story mode, you'll be able to pick them in the free-play mode.

In free-play mode, you can play by yourself or you can challenge your friends so that both of you will start in same map, with same difficulty and same starting conditions. It's not multiplayer, you just play the same game single player, and compare results when both players end their game in different time. It's really hard to make any comparison in such game if you're not playing under same conditions.

Here is the uncolored drawing of Lady Z, aging in time. (drawn by Şerif Karasu)
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verticalvertex
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« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2012, 04:23:37 AM »

The map looks interesting. Is it realtime 3d?
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It's all good.
batiali
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« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2012, 05:51:18 AM »

Yes, camera angle also changes when you zoom in.
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batiali
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« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2012, 10:11:53 AM »

Some more Lord portraits. First one has leadership characteristic which leads to more migration and citizen happiness where second one is more of a science man - having advantages on researching new technologies.





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Cellusious
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« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2012, 12:17:33 PM »

When i comment of a project on tigsource, it's either because i think it looks completely stellar, or it's terrible. in this case, the first.

I love the style you got there, and the concept portraits for some reason bring vibes of Assassin Creed. Which i think is great.

Keeping a looksie for this one.  Blink
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Jerom
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« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2012, 01:08:07 PM »

Nice portraits!
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batiali
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« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2012, 03:18:31 AM »

@Cellusious & Jerom: Thanks for the feedback.

Here's 8 random technology (from 50 total) icons.



And a small music piece composed for the game.

http://soundcloud.com/dominationthegame/domination-theme2

We are planning to make a total of 10-15 1-minute themes and decide which one to play based on the conditions & challenges player facing. They will be mostly triggered by Major Events which player will have to pick a choice. There will be several types of events, (natural disasters, diplomatic events, migrations, uprisings, celebrations, random encounters etc. any problem that a ruler might face)

Here's some sketches of those events. They are very close to their final forms, so they will stay as "sketches" in the real game. There will be at least 40 of these sketches, and various events for each sketches leading a minimum of 120 different events.









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zede05
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« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2012, 05:30:45 AM »

Very nice artworks!  Hand Thumbs Up Left Looking forward to seeing more.
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Thecoolestnerdguy
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« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2012, 09:24:23 AM »

Pretty interesting concept! Looking forward on this project.
The artwork is outstanding!
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Sad minecraft didnt copyright squares
batiali
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« Reply #11 on: October 12, 2012, 12:41:05 AM »

@zede05, @Thecoolestnerdguy: Thanks for the feedback!

More artwork! Some of the tech icons are still wip.










« Last Edit: October 23, 2012, 02:44:57 AM by batiali » Logged
batiali
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« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2012, 01:18:18 PM »



Playing with the colors of the interface.

Those merchant portraits are place-holders. (I think they were from Settlers 7 Smiley)
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batiali
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« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2012, 04:03:27 AM »

I've been facing a lot difficulties on the programming side of Domination.
One tiny challenge of the many - and the one I'm currently working on - is AI-Scouting.

Scouting is expensive, and real scouting is only done for human player. (More about how its handled later) But AI-players still need a fake scouting to decide if a city is in range or not. So, we need something like getCitiesInVision function which returns all the cities that have been scouted.

AI Players just increase their vision range in time depending on the technologies they discovered. Then when they need to get which cities in range, it calculates distance from his own cities to all other cities in the map. If distance < range, it means that city is scouted.

The problem is that, this function might be called A LOT depending on diplomatic conditions. And it's not very efficient to make this calculation ALL the time. So, first thing came to my mind is to keep _citiesInVision for every Lord out there and update those whenever their range increases. But it's not enough, because a city may have expanded into their range earlier. It's very hard to know when this happens - efficiently. And most importantly, AI may not really need citiesInVision for a long time but it will still be updating it everytime it range increases.

Current solution: When the getCitiesInRange called again, it checks if the range has changed after last update (if yes: update citiesInRange) then it checks if it's been some time after last update (if yes: update citiesInRange) and returns citiesInRange. This decreased the amount of this function called in a game session greatly.

We started writing the stories of each Ruler. My step-father (who is a great writer imo) has outlined most of the stories. I'm very happy with the results so far and can't wait to share it with you. But first, we need to finalize 1-2 of them and translate them into English. Smiley

Oh, and some nice progress with character sketches. Did I mention every ruler will have different characteristics and this will hugely affect the way you play? Here's 3 characters one barbarian, one nomad and one merchant. Guess which one is which Smiley





« Last Edit: October 23, 2012, 04:09:56 AM by batiali » Logged
voidSkipper
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« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2012, 04:42:58 AM »

I'd really be surprised if that cities issue was enough overhead to cause slowness in this sort of game, but depending on your setup you could early out by the maximum possible size of a city, or barring that, maintain a hash table of territory occupation as a grid, and just check which cities overlap with new sections of the grid that have been expanded into.
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batiali
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« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2012, 05:25:39 AM »

It can't cause slowness by itself alone. But these kind of small problems really bothers me when it feels it's the wrong way of doing it. 60~ is probably the MAX city a game should have which is not much. Even if every city checks their distance with every other city in every frame, it would be fine - which is not the case. But this is just a small part of the game. There's a lot of other things going on.

So, you are saying that whenever a city expands into a new land, I should check which cities has vision of that land? That would be really accurate solution, but it means a lot of update since cities expand all the time.
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gears
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« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2012, 02:55:33 PM »

I'm intrigued by the map. Are those voronoi cells? How is distance calculated? Any interesting techniques in your map generation or rendering? Any thoughts on smooth cell transitions versus abrupt boundaries? If that's too many questions, feel free to skip some Smiley
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batiali
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« Reply #17 on: October 23, 2012, 11:46:59 PM »

@gears I'm glad those are asked Smiley

Yeah, those are voronoi cells.
amitp's famous post for polygonal map generation really helped me during the implementation. I used simple square based grid & hexagons before I tried polygons and I'm very happy with voronoi.

Distance between cities are calculated simply between two polygons (centers of the cities). But I needed a fast way to calculate distance between nearby polygons when I was working on pathfinding(for scouting). So in data structure every polygon (Land) keeps a list of neighbor polygons & a float array calculated on start for its distance to those neighbors.

Quote
Any interesting techniques in your map generation or rendering?
Voronoi generation for 10k polygons is slow. It takes around 2 seconds on my computer. (It takes a LOT in ipad 3) But the thing is random generation is not about voronoi generation. Same voronoi diagram is perfectly ok to be used in all the game sessions. What makes the randomness is the noise you use to generate heightmap. So, since I don't need to generate voronoi on the fly, I can only generate it on the start of the game once. I did more and made a tool that creates the polygonal map and saves it to an xml file. Reading a lot of data from xml takes around 0.5 seconds, but that's better than 2 sec.

This is my first 3D project so I'm still learning about rendering stuff. I really want to get the good feel and I know I'm not there yet. Here's a WIP screenshot with a smooth transition & simple textures. Please let me know your ideas about if it looks better than abrupt boundaries and how can I improve it more. (One limitation of the engine is I can only use 3 different textures - in my case, I used beach, grass, snow textures)






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batiali
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« Reply #18 on: October 24, 2012, 12:43:39 AM »

It would be really nice to get feedback on some of the themes as well.

Theme 2
Theme 7
Theme 11
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